TONIGHT! Dolph Ziggler's had shots at the IC title before, but has fallen short against past champions, Rey Mysterio and John Morrison. Is this the night Dolph finally wins the big one by beating Kofi Kingston? Plus, Rey's been fingered as the guy who whacked Undertaker. Will he respond tonight? SmackDown is NOW!
WWE - The Champ Is Here!
Opening credits - Let it roll!
No opening pyro, because Rey Mysterio's coming straight to the ring with his own. Looks like he's about to address the accusations. Promo time! "Last week...last week, when I got chokeslammed by Kane into the Gulf of Mexico, I went down about 10 or 15 feet underwater. When I hit the water, I got the wind knocked out and my lungs filled up with fluid. I just remember, as I was trying to catch my breath, I couldn't...and I started to freak out. For the first time in my life, I saw my life flash before my eyes. As I struggled to reach the surface, I saw the face of my accuser: Kane. He was standing there, looking at me, then he just walked away. You know...straight up, I've been through a lot of things in my career. I've taken beatings, I've been backstabbed, but I have never, NEVER been accused of something I didn't do. And I still can't believe that last week, Kane accused ME of taking out his brother, The Undertaker. Hey, I've always been honest with you. Yo siempre te corazon, he sido honesto con ustedes. I did NOT have anything to do with attacking the Undertaker. In my opinion, Kane has always been very delusional. Ese vato esta loco. Aw, for real! And now he's threatening...he's threatening to put me in a casket after our match at Summerslam. Hey, I'll be honest with you, raza, I don't like caskets. They freak me out. To me, caskets are a symbol of loss, of heartbreak, caskets were made for the dead. But when I DO die and I meet my maker, it ain't gonna be Kane who judges. There's only one person that can judge me y ese es Diosito. Only God can judge me, He knows who attacked the Undertaker and so do I. I know exactly who attacked the Undertaker and I'm gonna tell..."
Interruption comes from Drew McIntyre, of all people. We take this time to note that we are taped from Laredo, TX! McIntyre hits the ring and grabs a mic. "Now we have names for people like you where I'm from, Rey. Those who wear masks, those who lurk in the shadows, trying to gain the trust of the masses."
Rey: "Oh, you have names for people like me."
Drew: "That's right. We call you people criminals! Now you, Rey Mysterio, have pulled the wool over these people's eyes for decades now. That's right, Rey Mysterio has pulled the wool over all your eyes! But now, at the expense of the Undertaker, the truth has finally come out. How could you, Rey? How could you?"
Rey: "How could I what?"
Drew: "You are supposed to be a hero to all these people. Let me ask you this: Would a hero do nothing while CM Punk was falsely accused and had his arm injured?"
Rey: "No, that wasn't my business."
Drew: "Let me ask you something else: Would a hero stand idly by while Jack Swagger was falsely accused. And not only that, do nothing while he had to watch his father, his 64-year-old father being hospitalized in front of his own eyes."
Rey: "That also wasn't my business."
Drew: "It's ok, Rey. It's ok. I admire what you did. In fact, I wish *I* had taken out the Undertaker myself! But there's a difference between you and I. If I was the perpetrator, I would have done it alone. You, Rey, needed help. Look at you! I do not believe for one second that someone like you is capable of taking out someone like the Undertaker. But I AM! I could take out anyone I choose! Did you see what I did to Christian last week? I destroyed his arm so badly, that the doctors say he'll never be the same again. And after that very same match, I had an idea."
Rey: "What? Tell me, what's your idea?"
Drew: "My idea was to do the exact same thing to you in your own back garden here tonight. I've already spoken to Teddy Long, Rey. And if you agree, he'll make it official. So what do you say, Rey? Will you fight me? Come on, Rey! What kind of man are you? Come on, Rey! Show me the kind of aggression you showed the Undertaker! You try to do to Drew McIntyre what you did to him! I dare you! Come on, Rey! I dare you! I dare you!"
Rey: "Whoawhoawhoawhoa, calmate, calmate, compa! Tranquilo! Tranquilo! First off, how dare you come out here and disrespect me in front of mi raza! You want to see some aggression? You want to fight me tonight?"
Drew: "That's exactly what I want, Rey! I dare you! Fight me!"
Rey: "You want to see me get aggressive, huh? Me quieres ver agresivo, eh? Me quieres ver agresivo? Horale! Horale pues! Si, mon! Me and you! Me and you tonight!"
Rey shoves McIntyre and walks out. The fight is on for tonight.
Later tonight, it's the exclusive premiere of the trailer for "Legendary", starring John Cena and Danny Glover. Oh, I smell saccharine-coated shit...
Later tonight, Kofi Kingston defends the Intercontinental Title against Dolph Ziggler.
MATT HARDY v. "DASHING" CODY RHODES Match starts with Rhodes hammering away on Matt and stomping away in the corner. Matt quickly turns the tide and hammers away in the cor...NOT THE FACE!!! NOT THE FACE!!! Corner whip is followed by a corner clothesline and a bulldog for 2. Matt goes for...something, but Cody ducks out. We take a break less than a few minutes in. Ugh.
We come back with Matt hitting the armbar. Grisham says we've manged to go the whole match without Rhodes getting hit in the face. HUH? Did he WATCH the opening of that match or is he just blatantly making things up? Crotch legdrop and seated dropkick get 2 for Matt. Both men exchange blows, with Matt getting the better of it. Corner whip is reversed, but Cody's charge eats elbow. Matt goes up, but Rhodes yanks him down and hits a springboard Shining Wizard that Grisham calls the Beautiful Disaster. Awesome name for that move! Cody covers for 2. Kneedrop comes before Cody hits a crossface. Matt gets to his feet and hammers out of it and goes for a sunset flip. He gets it for 2, but Cody takes control again. Vertical suplex attempt is blocked and Matt gets an inside cradle for 2. Cody charges with the knee to take control again and hits a gordbuster before going back to the crossface. Matt hammers out of it again, so Cody tosses him down and stomps away. Rhodes hammers away in the corner and nails a bodyslam before hitting the crossface AGAIN. Matt gets back up and Cody whips him into the ropes. Matt gets an elbow and drops Rhodes and hits clotheslines. Back elbow hits and Matt nails the Side Effect for 2. Matt tries to kick Cody into the Twist of Fate, but Cody catches the foot, spins him around, and gets a schoolboy for 2. Hardy clothesline is reversed into a Russian legsweep. Kneedrop misses, though. Corner clothesline for Matt hits, but Cody hangs on to the ropes. Unable to pull him out, Matt opts to try and place Rhodes up top, but Cody's hammering back. Both men exchange blows. Matt goes up for a Superplex attempt, but Cody slides underneath (!) and grabs Matt's legs for an Alabama Slam attempt. But Matt's hanging on to the top rope for dear life. Cody decides to drop Matt's face on the turnbuckle instead. Cross Rhodes will finish for Cody and get him the pin.
WINNER: "Dashing" Cody Rhodes - That was a nice finishing sequence. Good stuff from these guys, but Cody going for multiple restholds was a bit annoying.
Later tonight, Kofi Kingston defends the IC title against Dolph Ziggler.
"Legendary" trailer. If you're really fascinated with it, watch it here, because I don't get paid enough to review John Cena movie trailers. (Ok, I don't get paid, but you get what I mean)
Ad break. "Vampires Suck"? I thought we were done with these crappy spoofs!
Announcers thank Jet for "Rip It Up", the theme for Summerslam. Check out Jet's latest album! Or don't. Your choice.
Later tonight, Rey Mysterio accepts Drew McIntyre's challenge and they'll go one-on-one.
Alberto Del Rio vignette. See last week's review for that one.
We go backstage to Teddy Long with Rosa, who's still trying to get in shape. LayCool enter the picture, where Michelle shoos Rosa away and tells her to keep training. Michelle pleads for the co-champions concept, but Teddy's not biting and demands one of the belts. Naturally, you know what happens next. One asks the other to give up their belt and they bicker until Teddy jumps in and, again, demands a belt. Michelle gives in and surrenders her belt. Teddy says that there will only be one champion, which gets LayCool arguing again about who gets to be champion. Michelle grabs the belt, gives it a light tug, and it cracks perfectly in half. Damn, they don't make title belts like they used to, I guess. LayCool innocently point out that there's technically only one belt. Laycool walk out as Teddy looks on in disbelief.
We go back to...OH GODDAMMIT! Why do they always feel the need to put LayCool and Vickie Guerrero in back-to-back segments (when they're not putting them in the SAME segment)? I FFWD, as the gist is she's introducing Dolph Ziggler for his title match. Sign in the crowd: "Who's Dolph Ziggler?" Sorry buddy, that gimmick's (thankfully) been dead for over a year. Ziggler's next chance at the title is next.
Ad break - Summerslam ad.
WWE Just For Men Rewind - Last week, Kofi gets a slap in the face and goes nuts on Dolph Ziggler for a DQ. That's about a 4 on the Ken Shamrock scale.
DOLPH ZIGGLER (w/VICKIE GUERRERO) v. KOFI KINGSTON: INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH Kofi starts the match with a series of kicks, sending Dolph to the outside. We move on to a wrestling sequence, where Kofi gets a belly-to-back takedown. Dolph elbows out of a waistlock and goes to work hammering away before he dumps Kofi to the outside. Kofi gathers himself and runs back in, hitting Dolph with a forearm and hammering away. Dolph ducks out, but Kofi gives chase and doesn't let up. He bangs Dolph's head on the apron and rolls him back in. Dolph's able to take control again and starts going back to work. He hits the camel clutch quickly. Kofi gets to his feet and tries to fight out, but gets tossed down by his hair. Dolph stomps away, but Kofi fights back and hits a high dropkick. Clothesline sends Dolph to the outside and Kofi follows with a suicide dive. That'll send us to our next break.
We come back with Dolph hitting the armbar. He chokes away at the ropes and focuses on the arm. He hits the Perfect Snapmare for 2. Kofi starts trying to kick back, but Dolph cuts that comeback short. He drops many elbows, including the big jumping elbow (without the YAAAH) for 2. Hit the chinlock. Kofi gets to his feet and starts fighting back to the corner. He hammers away until he gets pushed back by the ref, allowing Dolph to take control again. Dolph gives Kofi's arm a Stunner for two. Dolph continues work on the arm. Dolph takes some time to send some love to Vickie, but that allows Kofi to hit TROUBLE IN PARADISE! Both men are down and Vickie's inside the ring in the ref's face. Kofi's up first and lets himself get distracted by Vickie, which allows Dolph to nail the Zig Zag for the pin and the title!
WINNER AND NEW CHAMPION: Dolph Ziggler - And just like that, Dolph finally wins the big one!
Immediately, Vickie grabs the belt and starts posing with it herself until Dolph finally comes to and starts the celebration. But Dolph doesn't get much chance to celebrate, because Kofi's not happy and he NAILS Dolph from behind and starts beating the crap out of him! He chucks Dolph outside and continues the beating. Crowd chants "Kofi" because they want BLOOD! Kofi clears off the announce table and continues beating the holy hell out of Dolph. BANG goes Dolph's head against the steel steps repeatedly. Dolph's a puddle of jello at this point, as Kofi gets him up and chucks him against the steel steps. The ref tries to get Kofi out of the way, as the referee brigade tries to check on Dolph. This one ranks another 4 on the Ken Shamrock scale. Someone needs to teach Kofi how to do "insane".
We get a replay of Dolph winning the title and Kofi's post-match insanity.
Time for the Straight Edge Society. CM Punk's still sporting a sling, but we learned better at the end of last week. At Summerslam, it's all three male members of the SES against the Big Show. Oh, this isn't going to end well, is it? CM Punk's got the mic. Promo time! "I have accomplished a great many things in my life. Outstanding things in my career. I've accomplished things that you people couldn't even grasp, things you people couldn't attain. Things like sobreity, for instance. Things you could never understand, like becoming the first and only three-time Straight Edge World Heavyweight Champion. Things like competing in back-to-back Money in the Bank Ladder Matches at Wrestlemania and winning. The closest people like you come to Wrestlemania is buying a ticket to see yours truly. I've never been more proud than last week when the Straight Edge Society formed such a cohesive unit that we toppled the giant of the WWE Universe, the burbling Big Show. And right now, I'd love nothing more than to watch the footage, so if you'd please in the truck, roll the tape." We get the footage of last week's attack on Show. "Ok, stop, please, pause. You see, right here, this is me breaking the dorsal side of the right wrist of the Big Show. Because of me, I know he at least has two severed tendons in his hand. I don't know if the Big Show's gonna make it to Summerslam. And I know this for a fact, it's a 50/50 shot if the Big Show ever signs another autograph for you people ever, ever again. And this is all because of what WE did. Now please, continue to roll the footage. It gets really good." We watch as Serena puts the high heels to Show's boot as Mercury pokes fun. "Joseph, are you happy? You're happy? Luke Gallows, you're happy? How about you, Serena? Are you happy? You're all so happy! That's funny, because I don't remember telling any of you that YOU COULD BE HAPPY! GET ON YOUR KNEES! GET ON YOUR KNEES NOW! You see when I said last week I meant, and it stands today and it stands tomorrow and it stands forever. You see, I've come to learn that your happiness is weakness. When you're happy, you let me down and when you let me down, you slip. And when you slip, and you fall, and if you show weakness even for one single second, you might as well be falling off the wagon. You might as be like all these people here today. I will not tolerate your weakness. I will not tolerate you slipping. I will not tolerate you falling off the wagon because if you do, you pack your bags! You might as well pack them full of alcohol for all I care! Stand up! From now on, you will be BETTER! You will better than everybody! You will be better! You will be better! You will be better! And you'll be happy when I say you're happy! And look at me! Just remember, satisfaction is the death of desire." The SES looks to be set straight after an awesome promo from their fearless leader. The SES is in action after the break.
Ad break - Wrestlemania 26 World Television Premiere tomorrow night!
THE STRAIGHT EDGE SOCIETY (w/SERENA) v. MVP, CHRIS MASTERS & JTG Who did MVP piss off to not even get an entrance? We start off with JTG and Luke Gallows. Luke hammers away on JTG. JTG gets a smack in the face and goes for a cross body, but gets caught. Gallows goes for a slam, but JTG falls back and tags MVP. MVP goes to work on Gallows and gets a drop toe hold and a knee to the back of the head for 2. Corner charge meets elbow and Luke gets a clothesline. Scoop slam and a tag to Mercury. Mercury hits a knee drop and works over MVP in the corner. Gallows is tagged back in and gets a gorilla press for 2. We hit the chinlock. MVP fights back up, but runs into an elbow. Tag is made to Mercury, who nails a neckbreaker. Tag back to Luke, who hits a knee and mounted punches. Elbow misses, though. MVP can't make the tag and Luke takes out both JTG and Masters, but that allows MVP to hit a facebuster. He goes for the Ballin' Elbow, but gets nailed from behind by Punk. Gallows gets the big boot to finish for the SES. MVP doesn't even get so much as a hot tag.
WINNERS: The Straight Edge Society - Is MVP in the doghouse or something? He spent that entire match getting beat up and he ate the pin on a team with Chris Masters on it. Something's wrong here.
Post-match, the SES celebrate and Punk laughs it up, as he takes the sling off again. AGAIN, the announcers completely ignore the fact that Punk's arm is just fine! What the hell?
It's time for some more Grooming Tips with "Dashing" Cody Rhodes. "Puny, bushy, out-of-control uneven eyebrows are a thing of the past. My name is 'Dashing' Cody Rhodes and I'm here to show you that you too can be dashing. One of the most revealing features of the face is the eyebrow. That's why it's so important that you browscape. With the delicate use of tweezers and the proper tools, you can groom your eyebrows and comb them. You comb your hair, right? Why not your eyebrows? I'm 'Dashing' Cody Rhodes, bringing you one step closer to dashing." Close with the goofy smile!
Time for a Raw Rebound and a Summerslam rundown!
Backstage, Kane's in a candlelit room with an open casket. "I could smell your fear, Rey. The putrid stench of lies is turning your stomach. I saw your eyes last week right before I chokeslammed you into the waters of the Gulf of Mexico. This casket, your FINAL resting place, strikes a dread so ominous in your soul that soon there will be nothing left to fight. But I will find a way. My vengeance will revive from your paralyzed state of horror, only to be destroyed when I stuff you inside this casket and the darkness consumes you forEVER!"
Rey Mysterio makes his entrance. He faces Drew McIntyre after the break.
REY MYSTERIO v. DREW McINTYRE We start with a lock up and Drew asserting the power advantage. Clean break in the corner. Rey kicks McIntyre low and runs away from the bigger man to assert the speed advantage. Rey does bullfighter motions to get the "Ole" chant from the crowd. Drew charges Rey to stop that nonsense. Big shoulderblock. Clubbing blows and European uppercut back Rey to the corner. Drew stomps a mudhole in Rey, but doesn't walk it dry. Corner whip, but Rey stops short and is able to hit Drew with a drop toe hold into the turnbuckle. He drops Drew into the 619 position, but Drew ducks out. Rey opts for a pescado instead. Springboard lands on his feet, but Drew nails a clothesline. Drew stomps away and slows the match down, as he often does. Clothesline. Slow cover. Clothesline off the Irish whip misses and Rey gets a headscissors. Drew charges, but gets lowbridged and falls out. Seated senton takes Drew down. And that'll lead us to our last break of the night.
We come back with McIntyre hitting clubbing blows. Corner whip, but a corner charge eats a boot. Rey goes up for a headscissors, but Drew counters with a turnbuckle powerbomb! Ouch! That gets 2. Mounted punches ensue before Drew goes for a surfboard off the STEEL POST! Drew then takes Rey outside and hoists him high, dropping him face-first onto the announce table. Rey narrowly beats the count back and Drew meets him with knees. Kick to the gut and we hit the chinlock. Rey kicks out of it and goes for his bulldog, but Drew pancakes him down in response and floats over for the near-fall. Fireman's carry into a gutbuster gets 2. More stomping from McIntyre and back to the chinlock. Irish whip into a backbreaker is countered into a tornado DDT. Springboard seated senton. Springboard cross body gets two. Drew goes back to the power moves, but a corner charge eats elbow. Headscissors is countered into a McIntyre tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for two. McIntyre works Rey in the corner with shoulder thrusts and stalls for a bit as Rey tries to get up. Sets up for the Future Shock, but Rey slides out and sets up for the 619. McIntyre slides out, but Rey gets a springboard into a roll-up for the pin.
WINNER: Rey Mysterio - McIntyre's offense looked really impressive, mostly because Mysterio sold it so well. Good match between these two.
Post-match, Rey grabs the mic. "Les tengo noticias." But Kane's pyro interrupts, as the Big Red Monster wheels out the casket. Kane enters the ring and as he does so, Drew McIntyre wipes out Rey from behind. He thinks better of staying in the ring when he sees the look on Kane's face and flees the scene. Rey tries to get up, but looks at Kane and slides out. He runs up the ramp as Kane laughs from the ring. Rey has the mic, though.
"It wasn't me who took out the Undertaker. It was YOU, Kane! It was YOU!"
Kane loses the smile and shakes his head. He yells out "No" repeatedly and falls to his knees. The big man is reduced to tears as he kneels in front of the casket. He stands back up and looks up at the sky as the show ends.
Sigh...it begins. Unless THAT'S a red herring and it's someone completely different that took out UT. Really, you never know at this point.
Decent show, I guess. Some pretty good matches and Dolph got his big win. But maybe it's because it's 4 am, but this show felt flat to me.
Drew made some good points about Rey not helping. It would have bolstered Kane's accusation. Rey's answer, however, was weak. He only had to say "yeah, but me and those guys don't get along."
Matt Hardy -- and it hurts to say this again -- is a load. He's slow and stiff out there. Rhodes and Dolph are essentially working the same gimmick, but it appears Dolph is drifting away from that. I hope. The commentators mentioned Rhodes' lack of kneepads and how that helped and hurt depending on what kind of contact he made. That was a nice touch. If Morrison must be on RAW, SmackDown still has a version of his Flying Chuck, and Rhodes does a good job with it.
Dolph's win is tainted by a horrible match. The ending did neither man any favors. It was awkward in pacing and blocking, even if Matt tried to cover by noting Vickie is the ref's boss. I appreciated him also working heel for the match by saying champ Ziggler would be better for business.
And I'm officially bored with Rey matches against big guys. He can't work any submission holds on them, and his offense is virtually all run-based. He is a videogame wrestler. But maybe it's Drew. Maybe it's also Swagger. I know Jericho is closer to Rey's size, and they had dazzling matches. But Jericho makes everyone look good. I tend to think Rey is stuck in one style of performance nowadays, and it's no fun to watch. My favorite moment of the match was Drew pancaking Rey and rolling to a pin. That was nice.
My hope for the Kane angle is that he becomes consumed by his evil nature and brings back the mask.
(edited by Matt Tracker on 7.8.10 1048) "To be the man, you gotta beat demands." -- The Lovely Mrs. Tracker
Originally posted by Matt TrackerMy hope for the Kane angle is that he becomes consumed by his evil nature and brings back the mask.
I'm going to respectfully disagree. Everyone was skeptical about Kane losing the mask when it first happened, but in retrospect, it's actually the best thing to happen to him. Honestly, Kane's menacing facials and his expressions whenever he brings out his evil laugh are the best things about the modern Kane. Even taking the past few months out of the equation, think back to his feud with Khali, where he was laughing maniacally as he wielded the "See No Evil" hook. You don't get the same kind of ominous sense from Classic Kane. Classic Kane makes you feel like you're facing a monster that can't be controlled. Modern Kane makes you feel like you're facing a cold-blooded killer that's going to methodically torture you and enjoy making you suffer. I've actually had more fun with the latter.
Of course, if he does bring back the mask, I won't complain.
Ziggler's yearlong odyssey of not winning the Intercontinental Title is over. Yayayay for him. Too bad that finish (Ziggler dies from the kick but then just gets up and does his move) made no sense. Whoever laid it out was dumb. OR the editing made it look bizarre. OR they just didn't time it well.
Originally posted by It's FalseSigh...it begins. Unless THAT'S a red herring and it's someone completely different that took out UT. Really, you never know at this point.
Undertaker vs. Kane at Night of Champions. And what's after that? HELL IN A CELL. Thirteen year anniversary of their first encounter. Good luck with that.
Originally posted by Matt TrackerAnd I'm officially bored with Rey matches against big guys. He can't work any submission holds on them, and his offense is virtually all run-based. He is a videogame wrestler.
A video game wrestler would do all his random moves regardless of whether he was wrestling Viscera or Ivory.
I can go either way with Kane getting his mask back. It would interesting to have Taker burn him then have Kane take revenge at Mania instead of Taker doing the same thing. Taking the mask off was not a good move even with the serial killer look that Glen Jacob has, the mannerism with the mask were amazing. He could go to unstoppable bringer of death to quizzical puppy dog in seconds. Without the mask, Kane is just a big guy who has a nice backstory and a connection with one of the more popular wrestlers of all time. Yet, Kane has had some good stories and this next to the WM XX one has been one of the better ones.
It's not gonna be Kane, I don't think. I doubt they'd have the dramatic reveal be Rey accusing him and him crying about it. Something strange is going on. Surely they wouldn't be stupid enough to try a Rey heel turn.
I figured once MVP was moved off of Raw and back to Smackdown they'd you know do something with him. He has been booked pretty much like he was on Raw. Guess it wasn't only the Raw writing team that wasn't high on him.
Check out All Japan in 1993. Kobashi was having great matches with people like Misawa, Kawada and even my boy Kikuchi every week/month. Even in these tail end years of his career, he was having great matches with Samoa Joe (as noted)